Meme Grinder #27 – ‘An Atheist, Homosexuality & the Orlando Shooting.’

Homo

See Meme Grinder #26 – ‘An Example of a Really Bad Atheist Argument.’
See Meme Grinder #28 – Coming soon.

This is some nasty behaviour on the part of this specific atheist given the timing in which it comes. If religious people do something good in uniting to pray, hosting vigils, and showing their love for victims and the families of the victims always expect some atheist to try and pull it all down. Sad times such as these are always prime opportunities for many atheists to jump on the bandwagon that blames all religion for something evil done in a specific religion’s name, or by a religious person.

Well, what do we make of this Old Testament law?

This law, and many others like it, were for the Jews living under the old covenant. They were civil laws, meaning that it was a government practice to put such people to death. The point was to keep God’s people holy and to banish evil from the theocracy. The Bible calls homosexual behaviour an abomination, even to the extent that under this ancient law the penalty for practicing homosexual behaviour was the death penalty. Exegete Paul Copan explains that “The Israelites seemed to have laws covering everything—food laws, clothing laws, planting laws, civil laws, laws regarding marriage and sexual relations… they were to be viewed first as visible reminders to live as God’s holy people in every area of life… God was concerned about holiness in all things—the major and the minor, the significant and the mundane. In such legislation, Israel was being reminded that she was different, a holy people set apart to serve God” (1). Thus in the context of Christian theology scripture ubiquitously holds homosexual practice to be an evil. However, how are Christians, today, meant to consider this law?

Christians aren’t under these laws as a result of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross (Rom. 4:15, 6:6, 6:8) since, as the Apostle Paul writes, that “we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound” (Rom. 7:6). In this way Christians are never to harm but love those with whom they disagree; homosexuals included. This has its basis on Jesus’ teachings to “Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another” (John 13:34).

I think we all, regardless of religions/beliefs etc., need to show our love for the victims that are suffering from this act of terror. And where this meme is concerned we needn’t pay much attention to it or to the atheist who made it.

References.

1. Copan, P. Is God a Moral Monster. p. 102 ( Scribd Ebook Format)

5 responses to “Meme Grinder #27 – ‘An Atheist, Homosexuality & the Orlando Shooting.’

  1. Pingback: Meme Grinder #26 – ‘An Example of a Really Bad Atheist Argument.’ | James Bishop's Theology & Apologetics.·

  2. Sorry, but Christians don’t get a pass on this one.

    1) Christians ROUTINELY cite verses such as those in Leviticus to justify all sorts of moral opinions. And I can’t say I ever hear other Christians stand up to them, to argue against such use of the OT. So Christians own this one.

    2) But on a deeper theological level, in another one of your posts, you claimed that God never changes. How do you reconcile that position with the abolition of the OT law under the NT? Your argument (and that of others I’ve heard) seems to claim, in essence, that the OT laws were effectively arbitrary – that there was no absolute moral underpinning to ANY of them. Is that really your position? But let’s take a look at a different topic – Slavery: Given that some of the OT laws condoned (and actually codified the institution of slavery, that means that (at best) slavery is neither a moral nor an immoral institution, or (at worst) slavery was considered to be a moral institution in the OT. The NT condoned slavery to a lesser extent. Today, the vast majority of people believe it to be immoral. So the question is –
    a) Has the morality of slavery changed over time (from moral to immoral), or
    b) Has it always been immoral, but the OT (and the NT to a lesser extent) got it wrong, or
    c) Has it always been (and still is) moral?

    • “1) Christians ROUTINELY cite verses such as those in Leviticus to justify all sorts of moral opinions. And I can’t say I ever hear other Christians stand up to them, to argue against such use of the OT. So Christians own this one.”

      Really? I doubt you’ve read too much apologetics, especially those who major in Biblical scholarship and history. There’s a lot of calling out Christians who use verses like these here.

      2) But on a deeper theological level, in another one of your posts, you claimed that God never changes. How do you reconcile that position with the abolition of the OT law under the NT?”

      I’m sure James will agree with me here. It’s not God who changes, you hold a simple minded view of OT law. OT law is separated into three groups which are as follows:

      First, universal moral laws. This includes do not steal, do not kill, etc….

      Second, cultural universals. These are laws geared to Israel’s culture that have a universal moral law behind them.

      Finally, ceremonial laws. Instructions for building the Ark of the Covenant, for example. All of this has been superseded by Christ.

      The verses on Homosexuality here are in category one. When it comes to universal and cultural universals, which are most of the laws of the OT, the morals they hold DO NOT change. No one is saying the ENTIRE OT law is abolished, only the ritual laws which were fulfilled in Jesus. Also to anyone taking the harsh laws of Leviticus literally needs to research ancient literature and culture. What took place was an act of ransoming, the harsh language used in these verses emphasized the weight of the crime and allowed the listeners to recall it when they were tempted to disobey. Most in ancients times didn’t have written laws, everything was translated orally. Anyone taking these verses as literal commands is wrong.

      Finally, you bring up the old slavery canard. I won’t explain it here as it’s all answered in these articles: http://christianthinktank.com/qnoslave.html and here: http://christianthinktank.com/qnoslavent.html

  3. So Paul’s comments in Romans 1 v26-32 do not apply to Christians then – even though he states quite clearly that “those who practise such things are worthy of death”?

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